Man indicted in shooting at conservative group's office in Washington

Reuters News
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Posted: Aug 22, 2012 6:35 PM
Man indicted in shooting at conservative group's office in Washington

By Barbara Goldberg

(Reuters) - A Virginia man was indicted on federal and local charges for last week's shooting of an unarmed security guard at a Christian lobbying group in Washington, federal authorities said on Wednesday.

A grand jury in U.S. District Court returned an indictment against Floyd Lee Corkins II, 28, of Herndon, Virginia, U.S. Attorney Ronald Machen Jr. said in a statement with James McJunkin, assistant director of the FBI's Washington field office, and Washington police chief Cathy Lanier.

On August 15, Corkins walked into the Family Research Council, which lobbies against same-sex marriage, and told the guard, "I don't like your politics," according to court documents.

"The defendant retrieved a firearm from his backpack, pointed it at the security guard, and opened fire, striking the guard in the arm," Machen said in the press statement.

"After being wounded, the guard moved toward the defendant, wrestled the firearm away, and subdued him," the statement added.

Corkins was indicted on a single federal offense of interstate transportation of a firearm and ammunition, which carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison.

He also was indicted on two District of Columbia offenses, including assault with intent to kill while armed and possession of a firearm during a crime of violence. The former carries a mandatory minimum of five years in prison and a maximum of 30 years. The latter carries a mandatory minimum of five years in prison and a maximum of 15 years.

Corkins, who has been in custody since his arrest soon after the shooting, was scheduled to appear in court on Friday for an arraignment and detention hearing.

Authorities said Corkins, a volunteer at a Washington gay and lesbian community center, was carrying Chick-fil-A sandwiches at the time of the midmorning shooting. The fast-food chain's president has publicly opposed gay marriage.

J.P. Duffy, spokesman for the Family Research Council, said the group had no immediate comment on the indictment.

(Editing by Peter Cooney)